Police converge at Paris' Arc de Triomphe to protest government line

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PARIS (Reuters) - Dozens of police cars converged at the Arc de Triomphe in central Paris on Saturday in defiance of the government, days after authorities promised “zero tolerance” for racism within law enforcement staff.

BFM television showed dozens of parked vehicles roaring their sirens and flashing blue lights in front of the monument, where intense unrest had taken place in December 2018 at the beginning of the “yellow vests” anti-government protests.

The French police had already marched in protest along Paris’ Champs Elysees boulevard to the interior ministry on Friday.

A wave of anger has swept around the world after the death of George Floyd, an African American who died after a white Minneapolis police officer knelt on his neck for nearly nine minutes while detaining him on May 25.

Floyd’s death sparked debates worldwide over police behaviour and in France in particular, where accusations of brutal and racist treatment of residents of often immigrant background by French police remain largely unaddressed, rights groups said.

Riot police fired tear gas and charged at pockets of violent protesters at an anti-racism rally in central Paris on Saturday.

Reporting by Matthias Blamont; Editing by Richard Chang